Philip Hammond’s last Budget focused on driverless cars as an example of the brave new technological world. But should we believe the hype? The Spectator arranged for Christian Wolmar, author of a new book on the subject, to meet Rory Sutherland, vice-chairman of Ogilvy & Mather and The Spectator’s Wiki Man columnist, to talk about the future of driving and transport.
Wolmar: Let’s face it: we’re talking about a technology that will never happen. There may be some driverless cars going round Phoenix in a very limited way but Waymo are very secretive about what they’re doing. The hype is being driven by carmakers desperate to lay claim to the future
Sutherland: I am less sceptical. Being driverless is not all-or-nothing: there are intermediate gains, not least in road safety. New technology means they are much less capable of harm.